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Flying Foxes

Bats of the genus Pteropus, belonging to the Megachiroptera sub-order, are the largest bats in the world. They are commonly known as the Fruit bat, Flying fox or Malayan Flyingfox among other numerous colloquial names. They live in the tropics and subtropics of Australia, Africa and Asia. Bat Behemoth: The largest bat known, the wingspan of the species Pteropus giganteus can measure 180 centimeters (6 feet) across, although it only weighs up to 1.5 kilograms (53 ounces). This makes Pteropus smaller than the largest birds or extinct pterosaurs. The oldest ancestors of Pteropus to be unearthed appear in the fossil record almost exactly as they appear today, the only notable differences being early flight adaptations such as a tail for stabilizing. The oldest megachiropteran is dated at around 35 million years ago but the preceding gap in the fossil record makes their true lineage unknown. Eat Your Fruits and Vegetables! Characteristically, all species of Flying foxes only feed on nectar, blossom, pollen and fruit, which explains their limited tropical distribution. They do not possess echolocation, a feature which helps the other sub-order of bats, the Microbats, they locate and catch prey like insects in mid-air. Instead, smell and eyesight are very well-developed in flying foxes. Many species are threatened today with extinction, and in particular in the Pacific a number of species have died out as a result of over-harvesting for human consumption.

Flying Foxes
Flying Foxes

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